OSSLT Parent Information

Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test
Information Session
October 8th, 2014
7:00 p.m.
The OSSLT is a provincial test of literacy (reading and
writing) skills students have acquired by Grade 10. It is
based on the literacy skills expected in The Ontario
Curriculum across all subject areas up to the end of
Grade 9.
• March 26, 2015
Test Materials
• two test booklets and one Student Answer
• 2.5 hours of testing time in total ***
• an Individual Student Report indicating
whether you are successful or unsuccessful
Writing Tasks
Reading Selections
News Report (1 page)
Informational (paragraph,
new report)
Opinion Piece (2 pages)
Narrative (dialogue, reallife narrative)
2 Short Writing Task (6
8 Multiple Choice
Writing Questions
• Conventions
• Sentence &
Paragraph Structure
• Organization of ideas
20+ multiple-choice
reading questions
2+ open-response
reading questions (6
lines each)
• Explain with text
• Explain with text
support and student
• Summarize
Reading Skills
The test has multiple-choice and open-response questions
that focus on the reading skills required
in school and daily life:
-understanding explicitly (directly) stated ideas and information
-understanding implicitly (indirectly) stated ideas and information
-making connections between information and ideas in a reading selection
and personal knowledge and experience
Reading Selections
(Paragraph &
News Report) words & RealLife Narrative
about 600
(fewer than
100 words)
Types of
Choice &
lines each)
Writing Skills
The test has short- and long-writing tasks, and multiple-choice
questions that focus on three writing skills required in school and
daily life:
-developing a main idea with sufficient supporting details
-organizing information and ideas in a coherent manner
-using conventions (spelling, grammar and punctuation) in a manner
that does not distract from clear communication
Types of Writing Tasks & Questions
Long Writing Tasks
(News Report & Two Short-Writing
Series of
(6 lines each)
Expressing an
Multiple Choice
(Developing a
main idea,
organizing ideas,
1. “Modifications” are changes to content of the test and to
performance criteria. Modifications are not permitted,
because they affect the validity and reliability of the test.
2. “Accommodations” are supports and services that enable
students with special education needs to demonstrate
their competencies in the skills being measured by the
test. Accommodations change only the way in which the
test is administered or the way in which a student
responds to its components. Accommodations do not
alter the content of the test or affect its validity or
1. “Exemptions” are decisions made for students whose
Individual Education Plan (IEP) states they are not
working toward an Ontario Secondary School Diploma
2. “Deferrals” are decisions to postpone the writing of the
test until the following year for students who are working
toward an OSSD, due to one of the reasons outlined in
Section C of this guide.
Do I have to write the OSSLT?
If you entered Grade 9 in September 2000 or later and are working toward an
Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD), you must write the OSSLT. This
applies to all students in publicly funded schools and inspected private
Why do I need to write the OSSLT?
You need to be sure that you have the reading and writing skills you should have
acquired by the end of Grade 9, as outlined in The Ontario Curriculum. These skills
are the basis for learning in all subject areas throughout both elementary and
secondary school. Successful completion of the OSSLT meets one of
the 32 requirements for the OSSD.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will the OSSLT count toward my course marks?
No. Successful completion of the OSSLT is one of the 32 requirements for
the OSSD. The test will not count toward your course marks.
Will universities and colleges see my OSSLT results?
Your secondary school transcript will indicate that you have completed the
OSSLT as one of the 32 requirements for the OSSD.
What happens if I do not pass the OSSLT?
You can take the test again the following year. You can also talk to your
parents or guardians and your school principal and/or teacher about taking
the OSSLC instead of retaking the test.
Frequently Asked Questions
I am new to Ontario, and English is not my first language. Can I get a
special provision or deferral?
You may be able to get a special provision or deferral. For more
information, talk to your parents or guardians and your school principal
and/or teacher, or visit EQAO’s Web site, www.eqao.com.
What happens if I leave questions blank?
You’ll get a score of zero for these questions.
Literacy Initiative at St. Joan of Arc
Literacy Practice
(In-class via Smart Board Broadcast)
• 8 sessions between November and March
• Student will be provided with their own
Literacy Workbook (with tips and activities)
which supplements the broadcasts
• Students will complete activities following
each broadcast
• After the eight sessions are completed,
workbooks will be marked and returned to
students prior to the OSSLT
After-School Literacy Class
• 10 sessions (2 days a week) starting in
Grade 9 Mock Test (May 2014)
April/May Grade Nine Mock tests are individually
marked and the data is tabulated then student
responses are analyzed. Results are mailed home.
•Three groups are established:
i. On target to pass
ii. Need ARD support/GLE (6 week preparation
iii. After School Literacy (Letters are mailed home
in January)

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